The Bachtel-Stein originates from a pre-alpine region not far from busy Zurich, Switzerland’s largest city. Despite the close proximity to this modern city, the cheese is produced in a true artisan fashion. The cheese dairy gets raw milk delivered daily straight from a small group of near-by farmers.
This cheese is unique not only because of its shape (‘Stein’ means stone in German and hints to its shape as a brick stone) but also because Christa Egli, the dairy farmer, only uses fresh morning milk to produce this special cheese. This means the wonderful, unpasteurised milk goes straight into production without being cooled over night or processed in any way allowing the cheese to build from the full, natural flavour of the fresh milk.
Christa’s father, Paul Bieri, invented the Bachtel-Stein. After many years of producing Emmental cheese, Paul decided to go his own way. He built up the speciality dairy farm securing the long-term future of his family business and producing some amazing boutique cheeses.
The Bachtel-Stein is ripened in the cellars of the dairy farm for two to three months. During that time the cheese is washed several times a week with a salt brine and walnut solution and as a result, the matured cheese offers a delightful hint of a walnut.
How we wrap your cheese
Freshness of your cheese is important to us. That’s why – unless noted differently in the description – we package all of our cheese in vacuum bags to help minimize travel impacts. However, we understand that some of you prefer cheese being wrapped in cheese wrap. This option is available to you for a small fee (it takes more time to package the cheese this way, that’s why we charge you a little bit more). Unless specifically noted in the description, all cheese will generally have a best before date of at least 14 days, vacuum packed cheese generally about 2 months. Please note that with cheese this is often only a guidance date and does not necessarily mean the cheese will be of lesser quality beyond that date. In fact many soft(er) cheeses are best kept close to or until after that date for maximum ripeness.
How the cheese gets to you
All Alpine Express cheese are shipped in environmentally friendlier, insulated cardboard boxes. The cheese is bolstered with recycled packing paper & kept cold with food grade ice gel pack(s). It is shipped the fastest possible service, usually Australia Post Express. See Australia Post’s Express Delivery Estimator (origin is ‘Brisbane Metro’). From time to time we may choose a different shipping provider depending on speed of service, costs and other factors.
Unless noted otherwise, all cheese boxes are sent on Mondays with an order cut-off time at 9am (Sydney time) that day. You will get a tracking number to follow your parcel’s progress.